In the middle of a job interview, you sense that things are going smoothly. Everyone is smiling, lots of encouraging nods, and most of your initial nervousness has faded. Then a question that you hoped they wouldn’t ask rears up in front of you.
Some job interview questions are designed to throw you, questions that you can’t specifically prepare to answer. For those questions, you can learn and practice how to respond when they show up. Find a list of such questions and practice responding.
“How strong are your Microsoft Excel skills?” is not one of those questions, but it’s not very specific. And when you answer it vaguely it is obvious to you that it is obvious to the interviewer. And there is no excuse not to have a very specific answer to that question.
Clear Statement on Microsoft Excel Skills
“I have advanced-level skills in using Microsoft Excel. Those skills are beyond the requirements of my existing job, but I have undertaken on my own to learn how to complete a wide range of Excel tasks. Here in my portfolio I have checklists for Basic, Intermediate and Advanced Excel with a check mark beside those skills that I have mastered and demonstrated in at least two small projects. I would be pleased to demonstrate any of those skills at a time of your convenience. I know that it is important to you to be certain that I can actually perform these skills for you when needed.”
Here is the payoff. A few days later, when somebody is looking over their notes from your interview, their notes from the Excel question won’t be vague or blank either. And maybe that will keep your application from being discarded.
Please download the checklists, use them to prepare for your job search. If they are helpful, spread them around to others who might benefit. And I would be delighted to hear your stories about the response you get from interviewers to your clear and succinct response.
- What Credentials on Microsoft Word Skills can you offer? (danarmishaw.com)
- Document your Advanced Microsoft Word Skills (danarmishaw.com)
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